What can I say in my rental ad?

6 Replies

I am posting an ad for my rental via Postlets. I know there are some things you cannot say in a rental ad....things that would indicate discrimination, etc.

But the things I wanted to put in the ad: Must make 3x the rent (gross salary) No prior evictions or felony convictions....these are all ok, correct?

I just don't want prospective tenants paying for a tenant screening if they aren't going to qualify.

I plan on using SmartMove.....do the tenants also need to fill out an application with me as well?

I have a paper application and then if they pass that send them the smartmove link. The paper tells me rental references, previous address history and gives me their SSN etc in case I need it later. I ask the questions and then it needs to match up to the smartmove information and I also have phone numbers for previous landlords. You can put what you have stated but I also use descriptors of the property that help with the renters who will qualify. ... Will do background and credit check, etc. will check references. I also state features of the area such as part of town. You can't advertise "perfect for 1" or anything like that. You can describe facts about the property.

I put all of those (3x rent, no evictions, no felonies) in my ads to help weed out people who aren't qualified.

Yes I would have them fill out an application with you also. Theres a bunch more info that you need from them that you wouldn't get from smartmove, plus you want to be able to cross reference what they have on their application with the smartmove results.

Thanks @Colleen F. Where is it you are getting your paper application from? I've come across a couple but would like to hear what others are doing.

Thanks again.

@Joe Butcher I think you are starting your screening one step too soon. Not that you want to lead anybody on or waste their time, but I want as many people as possible to show up when I show my properties. When the tenants you want, see that you aren't just looking for the first warm body with the first month's rent and a deposit, they know that you have some pride in ownership and that they earned the selection to be the tenant. It's not a game, but I think it's important for them to be aware of that and there's nothing more effective than them seeing you reject some people who want your place. I firmly believe they will value it more and take better care of it.

I still only use my application, but if I start using something like Smartmove, I'll have a "prescreening" application (with much less details) that they will fill out prior to doing the online application.

As long as you stick to describing the property without calling it "great for families" or anything like that, you'll be okay. Avoid describing your ideal tenant or who the property would be just right for.

I modified sample rental application in fileplace on this site to meet my needs. I added a second applicant space and modified to meet the area conventions. I also looked at some applications from local complexes I found online to see what was being asked in the area.

Join the Largest Real Estate Investing Community

Basic membership is free, forever.

By signing up, you indicate that you agree to the BiggerPockets Terms & Conditions.